Sunday, October 24, 2010

A Father-Daughter Dance

Got my beautiful girl out for a really fun 5K that roamed throughout the Highlands neighborhood today.

Here we are at the start, at Mt. Pleasant golf course, before Heather was annoyed with her father's incessant on-course coaching.Kudos to the Martin family, for pulling in a fantastic crowd for this first-ever race, in honor of Jimmy Martin, who passed away 15 years ago from cancer. All profits go toward the James S. Martin Scholarship Fund at Lowell High School, which is given annually to a Lowell High School senior with financial need who has participated in Highlands baseball, basketball or softball.

Making an extra-special debut along the course today was unofficial race photographer John Piekos, who ran the entire thing armed with his camera, taking not only award-winning photos, but neat videos to boot!
Running past the apartment where it all started for Jackie and I:Early on, through Tyler Park:Making the rounds on Pine Street:Booking our way up Parker Street:Surprisingly, Heather is still smiling, probably because we're running past her school while it's closed:A raucous water stop, courtesy of the Lowell High XC team, with Andrew front and center, and Congresswoman Niki Tsongas! An interesting combination, and an inspirational team effort outside Jim Martin's former home:The smiles are gone, but still the race continues:Much like life, there's the occasional uphill. Here's Heather digging deep:Passing her Chelmsford rival in the background:And the finish, up the steepest hill on the entire course!
The post-race party, waiting for the super soups:Great job, Heather! Onward and upward!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

So What Did YOU Do This Weekend?

Nice quiet weekend around these parts. It started with a high school reunion on Friday night. Got to catch up with old friends as well as the nun principal who spent four years trying to figure out how to get me out of her school.

Then, on Saturday morning, my beautiful daughter ran a chilly race, the first-ever BayState 5K. With her brother as her pace car, the pair delivered a terrific performance, captured here on the VFW Highway by race photog Jim Rhoades. Possibly my favorite running picture of all time. This was Heather at the start, with her brother pointing the way.

Nice loop around the Tsongas Arena

Always smiling.....

Getting high gives from Mom and Nana

And a kiss for a job well done from Mom

From there, it was time to Touch a Truck at St. Margaret's with Heather for a couple of hours. Heather got to wear a warm Allie-Gator costume. Mom spent the time indoors, tattooing children. Dad? He got outdoor duty touching trucks.

From there, it was the BayState pasta dinner, with the XC team supplying the support, and the XC parents taking care of the cooking.
Next, it was off to Tom and Megan's annual Halloween bash.

Like there was any question who's the Boss:
E-Streeter Wives:
E-Streeter gals:

And then Sunday morning, the BayState half marathon. The Scanlon father-son tandem, waiting to get started:

After the fact, at Lelacheur Park, here's the Lowell Police Academy contingent, staff instructors and student officers basking in their finishes:
And the E- Streeters, with Barry giving thumbs up to the post-race soup:

Whew! A nice, restful weekend!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Putting the Smut in Smuttynose

Three E-Streeters took part in one of the strangest-named races to be found anywhere, notching decent times in the Smuttynose Rockfest Half Marathon in Hampton, N.H. Cool medals waiting at the end of a fairly flat course.

Some quick notes on the pictures below - believe it or not, Tommy and I didn't have a bromance thing going, we just happened, by coincidence, to both wear the same toss-away long sleeve tee to start in the 42 degree weather, and both had red tees beneath. Tommy was much more fashionable, choosing to go with a coveted MCC Fitness Trail 5K Challenge shirt.

Sean, as always, was an individual, running alone the entire time, while Tommy and I spent the 13.1 side-by-side making fun of everything we could along the way. Chances are, we won't be welcome back to the Northampton neighborhoods anytime soon. Here we are at the 6.5 mile mark spotting some friendly faces in the crowd
And reaching for some inspirational high-fives from Finn and Shea.
Sean at the High Water homestretch mark, hitting his stride and having flashbacks to the Eastern States windstorm.
Tommy and I with our rolling roadblock, preventing anyone from passing us:

And of course, the obligatory finish line shot. Apologies to Sean's sister for the finishing time, about a minute or so off her previous half marathon time. But thanks for the number, Taryn! Thankfully, I didn't have to bandit the race, because everyone knows how low that is.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Hot on the Trail

E Streeters rocked the house today at the inaugural edition of the MCC 5K Fitness Trail Challenge on our Bedford campus, grabbing hardware left and right, and for one E-Streeter, the overall win! (You figure out which of the six that was!)

Here's the stalwart crew early in the morning, fresh off marking the course for all the other runners. Carlos, you'll notice, is carrying a lighter load of flags than the guy next to him.Here's the start. The speed bump didn't slow us down.And again with the start, with Sean preparing to make his move, cutting Tommy off from a sure win.
Speaking of wins, Scott apparently has his eyes on the prize. Or something down on the ground.Making his way up the final hill comes Carlos, still looking fresh, not having worn himself out staking an abundance of trail flags earlier.Sean has an otherworldly glow about him as he prepares his final stretch. Thumbs up from Barry for the race:Tommy's looking concerned
A pity you can't see it from this angle, but if you could see it from the other side, you'd know who's number 1.Here comes my star of the day. Pay no attention to the lunatic yelling behind her.
Accepting the award for her father, and much better looking to boot, Shea takes the prize!